Mangaluru, Oct 17, 2015: New Mangalore Port Trust’s Roll-on/Roll-off (RO-RO) service on ships set to be launched soon, it will be the first port in the country to launch such services which hitherto was available only on Konkan Railway.
The service which will commence shortly will be offered by Link Shipping & Management System Pvt. Ltd. with Pure Car & Truck Carrier (PCTC) M.V. Maria India. The vessel will operate between Adani Hazira Port near Surat to New Mangalore Port. There are also plans to introduce this service in between Adani Hazira Port and Kollam in Kerala. In Mangaluru and Hazira operations and marketing will be handled by Transit Global. Alvares and Thomas are steamer agents and stevedores.
This service is furtherance of Pradhanmantri Jalmarg Yojana which is part of Vision for Coastal Shipping, Tourism and Regional Development. The government is targeting 20% domestic cargo services. Similar to rail the Ro-Ro service helps in saving fuel, wear and tear of vehicles, reduction in pollution, harassment from various departments, toll amounts, traffic blocks etc. But most importantly, driver fatigue as they don’t have to drive the vehicles.
M.V. Maria India is a 160 metre long Ro-Ro ship with a capacity to carry up to 150 loaded trucks and 210 cars. The ship can cover Mangaluru - Hazira in less than 36 hours and Kollam - Hazira in less than 48 hours.
Aditya Suklikar, Executive Director of Link Shipping said :Taking a cue from the Government’s call to de-congest the road network, we have taken up this challenge and we are confident that shippers of cargo will find value in this cost-effective, reliable and environmentally-friendly mode of transport.
Melwyn D’Souza and Steevan D’Souza of Transit Global, Mangaluru said: The distance in road between these two places is nearly 2,000Kms which is covered by two drivers in 3-4 days and by a single driver in 4-5 days. The owners of trucks will benefit financially as it will be 20% less than the road service.
Ashok of New Himalaya Roadlines Transport Agency who has contacts with owners and truck drivers said this will benefit by delivering the goods on time, even before scheduled time. The items can be delivered fresh and goods without damage. Ratanlal, a truck driver from Bhilwara district in Rajasthan who came to know of this service says he is very happy and that he does not have to face the stress of delivering.
It may be remembered Konkan Railway introduced this system in railways to and from Mangaluru in the year 1999 which is operating successfully. This service is very popular that can be seen from the fact that about four lakh goods trucks have been carried by this service so far in 16 years.